FROM THE VALLEY: You Can't Handle The Truth
By Tom Valley
“You can't handle the truth”
“Yesterday, December 7, 1941 a date which will live in infamy, the United
States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air
forces of the Empire of Japan.”
There are few alive who actually heard Franklin D. Roosevelt's address to
Congress on that bleak, winter day, December 8th, 1941; the day he asked its
members to declare a State of War between the United States and Japan. But
only the history-illiterate are unaware of that speech and the ramifications
which followed. Patriotism and volunteerism soared to unprecedented heigths
to fight a common foe which threatened our American way of life.
But what hogwash, huh?! Why would he say such stuff?
The country didn't need to hear the reality of the situation. What a load of
crap. It wasn't like Pearl Harbor attacks would be hitting every nook and
cranny of the United States. There was no need to unleash widespread 'panic.'
It wasn't like it was contagious and could literally put everyone, everywhere in
danger. People can't take that sort of trepidation and truth telling. For gosh
sakes, man, he shudda thunk!
He should have simply 'downplayed' the situation and gone off golfing. Or
possibly misdirect America's attention by reminding them of the horrible
decisions they made by electing 'losers' into office; and how much 'in love' he
and dictators like Hitler, Stalin and Mussolini were. I'm just saying, no need to
And of note, in his first (1933) inaugural speech, F.D.R. inspired a
depression-scarred nation by declaring: “We have nothing to fear, but fear
itself.” (Most likely inspired from Thoreau's “Nothing is so much to be feared
as fear.” No biggie.)
But, seriously, FDR: what a phony baloney hoax about him being one of the
top three presidents ever. In retrospect, don't you think instead of a “nothing to
fear, but fear itself” sermon, he should have advised “nothing to see here.”
Thank God, we learned an important lesson from that shameful episode in
Alrighty then, that ought to generate enough hate mail to last me awhile.
(And every letter will try to misdirect its writer's inability to directly answer the
charge, the beef, they have with what I said They will, I guarantee, unfailingly
mention either Nancy Pelosi or Andrew Cuomo or both. (Or someone who is
not directly responsible for the issue at hand.) Never fails.
Moving on: Let's see who and what else I can stir up. Ah,
environmentalists/nature lovers will do.
By the way, after I finish this, I'm headed fishing. So what better time to
switch gears and tell my favorite joke about the beloved, relaxing pastime of
angling. (I've told it before, but as a senior, I've a free license to retell the same
story. It goes with the territory.)
Bagman Butch was a legendary, well-liked old-timer known for his success
at fishing. But there was a problem. Rumor was that he used dynamite to catch
his fish. And that rumor got back to the game warden who decided to pay the
'Bagger' a visit.
“Bagman Butch,” the game warden inquired, “is it true that you are using
explosives to catch your fish?”
“Well ..” the veteran fisherman started to explain.
“Wait, “the of icer interrupted, “first, let me just tell you that if it's true, I
can take your license, your boat, fine you ten thousand dollars and possibly
throw you in jail.”
With that warning playing in his head, Bagman Butch invited the of icer to
show up early the next morning and go out in the boat fishing with him. He
could judge for himself. The of icer agreed. After all, Bagman Butch was a
That next day, they loaded up the boat and headed out to the middle of the
lake. After coming to a stop and without breaking stride, Bagman Butch bent
over, grabbed a stick of dynamite from his tackle box. The game warden
watched in horror as the old-timer lit the explosive and tossed it overboard.
Naturally, all the fish in the area floated to the surface.
Totally aghast at what he'd just witnessed, the uniformed of icer declared,
“Bagman Buck, I told you I can take your license, your boat, fine you ten
thousand dollars and lock you up. Don't you care?”
The grizzly outdoorsman simply bent over, pulled out another stick of
dynamite, lit the fuse and handed it to the game warden and asked ... “You
gonna talk or fish?”
I always like ending the column with a bang.
And that's the way it looks from the Valley.
Contact Tom about surf and turf (your fish or beef) at: